Half Double Crochet is a simple, but beautiful crochet stitch. It is one of the foundational crochet stitches. The half double crochet stitch (HDC stitch) is just a bit taller than a single crochet stitch and smaller than a double crochet stitch.
The HDC is worked a bit differently than the other basic stitches. This gorgeous stitch creates a unique 3rd loop. This third loop creates even more opportunities in design which might just be why half double crochet is my favorite crochet stitch!
This detailed tutorial will teach you everything you need to know to master this stitch, answer basic questions and help you find a crochet pattern to practice your new skill!
What is a Half Double Crochet Stitch?
The HDC is worked a bit differently than the other basic stitches. It falls right between the single crochet and double crochet in height, but instead of working off two loops a t time, the yarn is drawn through three loops at once. Because of this, the hdc stitch creates a unique 3rd loop. This third loop creates even more opportunities in design which might just be why half double crochet is my favorite crochet stitch!
More Basic Stitch Tutorials
How Do You Do a Half Double Crochet Stitch?
Let’s dive into this fun, easy to do, crochet stitch!
To start, make a foundation chain. If you are following a pattern, the pattern will tell you the required number of chains to make. Then, wrap the yarn around the hook. This is called a “yarn over” and in patterns, you will find it abbreviated as YO.
Then, insert your hook into the 3rd chain from the hook and pull up a loop.
Now you will have 3 loops on the hook.
Yarn over again and pull a loop through ALL 3 loops at once.
Ta da! This beautiful crochet stitch is complete! Take note that when we started this row, we started in the 3rd chain from the hook. This means we skipped 2 chains at the beginning of the row. Those 2 chains = the 1st hdc stitch at the beginning of the row. So when you count your stitches each row, be sure to count those starting chains as ONE hdc.
Continue to half double crochet into each foundation chain. Remember to start each hdc stitch by wrapping the yarn around the hook before inserting it through the chain.
When you finish the row, rotate the work to start the next row.
Begin the 2nd row, by chaining 2. This chain 2 becomes your first stitch. Yarn over and work the first half double crochet of this row into the top of the 2nd stitch in the row below.
When you get to the end of the row, the very last stitch is worked into the top of the chain from the previous row. Remembering how to start and end each row with the “chain 2” counting as a stitch will keep your work even on each side.
HDC Frequently Asked Questions
Since the half double crochet stitch is a bit unusual, many crocheters have questions, so let’s cover them here!.
Is a Half Double Crochet the Same as a Single Crochet? No, a hdc is taller than a sc. A hdc starts with a yarn over and a sc does not. You can learn how to do a single crochet here.
What is the Difference between Half Double Crochet and Double Crochet? A hdc and a dc start the same; with a yarnover. However, things change after that. A double crochet finishes with a series of “pulling through 2 loops”. Taller stitches, like the treble crochet follow this convention. The half double crochet pulls through 3 loops instead. This makes the hdc shorter than the dc but taller than the sc. It also creates a third loop on the backside of the work. Learn about the double crochet stitch here.
Where is the 3rd Loop in the HDC? And What Does HDC in the 3rd Loop Look Like? This can be a bit hard to understand at first. Normally we work through the top two loops that sit at the top of the previous row. The hdc stitch produces a 3rd loop that is just below the normal 2 loops.
To work thorugh the 3rd loop instead, you simply insert your hook into that loop (from the top down) when working the stitches of the next row. It causes the normal 2 loops to push outward on the right side, creating a ridge. Here is how it looks on the Buckeye Beanie Hat.
Does the Turning Chain Count as a Stitch? Here is where things get tricky in the crochet world because the answer to this can vary from designer to designer and even from pattern to pattern. Typically the chain 2 DOES count as a stitch. But sometimes designers will treat the turning chain similarly to a single crochet turning chain and NOT count it. It’s important to know what counts as the first stitch because THAT is the stich you join to if working in the round or work INTO on the next round. This keeps the number of stitches in a row accurate. Its best to read the crochet pattern carefully and if you are working your own design, decide which looks better to you.
What is the Abbreviation for Half Double Crochet? Half double crochet is abbreviated as hdc. You can find a complete list of crochet abbreviations here.
What is Half Double Crochet UK? If you’re new to crochet, you might be surprised to learn that in other parts of the world the exact same stitches are called something slightly different. That can be super confusing! Here on Crochet 365 Knit Too, we crochet using US terminology. The Half Double Crochet is called a half treble crochet in the UK and you can find a US to UK conversion chart here.
What Can You Make with the Half Double Crochet Stitch? Anything your heart desires! I love this stitch because it looks beautiful but yet it is simple. My husband’s favorite mens hat uses this stitch, which is a great beginner project. I also love using it in conjunction with other stitches, such as in the the Fields and Furrows Afghan and the Blueberry Bead Stitch Beanie.
Looking for a fun variation of the hdc stitch? You might just love to learn the Herringbone Half Double Crochet stitch! Gorgeous, right?
For even more beginning crochet basics (or if you just need a refresher, be sure to check out my Getting Started series!
I love seeing your finished projects! If you enjoyed learning how to half double crochet, I’d love to see your work on Instagram, be sure to tag me @crochet365knittoo. If you are on Facebook, stop over to the Crochet 365 Knit Too Facebook page or pop over to the Crochet365KnitToo Club and share a photo! I’d love to see your work!